30 Kasım 2011 Çarşamba

Battle of Manzikert

Before 1071 there weren't any Turk in Anatolia. They were living in Central Asia. They were battling against Chinese when they were in Asia. They were tired. They didn't want to battle. The Chinese were attacking to Turks all the time. They needed peace. The people were dying because of the battles. They were immigratig for escape from the Chinese. They wanted to have a homeland. After that time Seljuq Turks started to search a homeland. The leader of Seljuq Turks, Alp Arslan found an area to reside. That area was Anatolia. It was very suitable homeland for Turks. They could do everything in that area. They could agriculture in Anatolia, so they could live there forever. Alp Arslan was a Mogol-Turk. His religion was Islam and he was fearless. Alp Arslan wasn't his real name. His real name was Muhammed bin Da'ud Chaghri. Alp Arslan was his nickname. People were calling him as "Alp Arslan", which means 'Heroic Lion' in Turkish.

They returned to their home. Alp Arslan gave the good news to others. He was happy, because they could have a new home. He analyzed the area very well, before he was leaving. He knew it wasn't easy to conquer there. In 1000's the Byzantine Empire was one of the strongest country in Europe. They had large area on the World and they had Anatolia. Turks needed a victory against to Byzantines for having Anatolia. They were small group, but they were very brave. They had belief for victory. Before the war, the Anatolia was in that situation. The purple area is showing the Byzantine territory and the red is showing Byzantine's attack, the green is showing Turks' attack. Before the Battle of Manzikert, Turks attacked the other parts of Anatolia, and they captured some cities. The Byzantium's
Emperor Romanos IV heard the battles. He decided to attack them. He collected very big army. He wanted help from the churches. The religion men wanted help from the other Christians. Romanos took this help from the other countries. His army had nearly 200.000 people. However Turks had only 30.000 people in their army. Romanos Iv made good attacks on Turks. He got good victories, but he wanted to destroy the Seljuq Turks, so he attacked to Seljuq Turks in Manzikert. There was a Turks' castle in Manzikert.

Alp Arslan had spies in Byzantine's army. He knew what Romanos IV decided to do. He exactly knew where he was, what he planned, so he was ready for everything. Romanos IV moved on to Manzikert. He was sure for the victory. He needed to choose a general for the important mission. He choosed Andronikos Doukas. His decision was very big suprise, because Doukas wanted to be an emperor. He didn't want Romanos IV on the top. In the war Romanos IV couldn't take help from him, but he didn't think about him, because he believed for victory. He knew that he could have very big fame in his country after the victory. He was dreaming it. He saw the Turkish army, they were escaping. He thought that they were afraid. He started to follow them. They ran and ran, however Turks were very fast. They couldn't catch them. They started to get tired. At this time Turkish archers attacked them, but still Romanos IV continued to attack. He lost many soldiers while they were attacking, but he didn't notice it. Then Turks returned and started to attack them. Romanos IV saw his soldiers were escaping. Then he saw his commanders. They were running away. In front Doukas was running away. Romanos IV understood that he lost the war. He accepted the defeat.

After the victory Alp Arslan took captive Romanos IV and they made that conversation:

          Alp Arslan: "What would you do if I were brought before you as a prisoner?"

Romanos: "Perhaps I'd kill you, or exhibit you in the streets of Constantinople."
Alp Arslan: "My punishment is far heavier. I forgive you, and set you free."

Alp Arslan showed his kindness to him. He didn't persecute him. He tried to create a peace. He offered a treaty to Romanos. Byzantine Empire accepted to give 360.000 gold to Turks each year. Alp Arslan married with Romanos IV's daughter. Romanos accepted Turks' living on Anatolia. After Romanos returned to Byzantine Empire, he was killed. This victory gave a new homeland to Turks. Still Turks are living in Anatolia.


17 Kasım 2011 Perşembe


Constantinople (The old name of Istanbul) was capital of the Byzantine Empire. Mehmed II, the Sultan of Ottoman Empire had a dream. He thought Istanbul was a wonderful city. He really wanted to conquer Constantinople. In the beginnings of the 1400's Ottoman Empire was rising. They started to conquer many country in Europe. In that years the Europeans started to beware. They knew the Ottomans could conquer everywhere in the Europe, but still the Ottomans couldn't conquer the most important city of Europe. That city was Constantinople. That city was controlled by the Byzantine Empire. That country was one of the strongest country at the World. But after Ottoman Empire's rising, they started to lose their lands in Europe and Anatolia. Constantinople had a land both in Europe and Asia. The Ottomans conquered the Asia part, but the Europe side was still in Byzantine Empire. Constantinople's geographic strategy was very important, so Ottoman really wanted to control that city. Because they knew that Constantinople was capital of all of the World. Byzantines knew something. If they lose Constantinople, they will dissappear from the World. Their names will only stay in the history pages. Because Constantinople was their capital city and they didn't have many land in Europe. Before the Fall of Constantinople, the world's map was like that.
File:Eastern Mediterranean 1450 .svg

The Byzantine Emperor was sure that they won't lose their capital city. Because they had a long chain under the sea. It was blocking the entrance of Ottoman's ships. Also they had unquenchable fire under the sea. It can easily burn the Ottoman's ships. They repaired their castles and walls. Also they wanted help from other Europeans. Many of the Europeans didn't want to see the Ottomans in Constantinople, because they knew the Ottomans could become more and more strong, so they accepted to help to Byzantines. On the other hand the Ottomans prepared many ships. Also they built a casttle on the Asia part of Constantinople. By this way they could be closer the Byzantines. Mehmed II was very strong person. In history pages, they were telling that every night Sultan Mehmed watched Constantinople and dreamed to conquer there. He knew it won't be east to get there.
File:Gentile Bellini 003.jpg

On 6 April 1453, the Ottomans attacked to Constantinople. They tried to everything to get there. However the Byzantines were defending their city very well. The chains were blocking the ships of the Ottomans, so they couldn't do anything to break their power. Nearly 40 days they stayed around Constantinople. The Byzantines started to lose power, but they were doing everything to defence there. Sultan Mehmed thought everything to get closer their castle, but if he didn't use their ships, they wouldn't conquer there. One night he ordered his soldiers cut some trees. They cut the trees and took tree's body part. They got a lot of big woods. Then Mehmed II ordered them to lubricate the woods. They did it and they stated to push the big fire ships on that oily woods. Maybe you wondered why they did it. The reason was that. They couldn't use the ships because of the chains under the sea. By this way the chains couldn't block them because their this plan.

At the morning the Byzantines couldn't believe that. How did enter the city ? All of them were asking these question. They weren't strong and they were in shock. In a week the city was fall. They accepted to give the city to Ottomans on 29 May 1453. Many Byzantines left the city and they went to Europe. After the victory the Ottomans changed the name of the city. It became Istanbul, which is still using today. They give a nickname to Mehmed II. They started to call him as the "conquerer".
File:Kusatma Zonaro.jpg

Also the Ottomans made Istanbul as their capital city. Mehmed II gave an order to build there a magnificent castle. They built Topkapi Palace for Sultan Mehmed and his family. Sultan Mehmed meet his dreams. He and his family started to live in Istanbul. After that year nobody can conquer Istanbul, because the Turks love this city.
File:Zonaro GatesofConst.jpg

File:Topkapi Palace Seen From Harem.JPG


5 Ekim 2011 Çarşamba

Lagâri Hasan Çelebi

Lagari Hasan Çelebi was an Ottoman aviator, who made a flight with rocket. He was a legandary. He made successful flight in Istanbul.

In the history pages you can not find an information about that situation. That information was told only in Evliya Çelebi's book "Seyahatname", so maybe this event could be wrong. We wanted to believe that event, because it was amazing event for that years. I will give more information about Evliya Çelebi in next days.
We aren't sure about who Lagari Hasan Çelebi was. When we look his last name, you can see it is the same name with Evliya Çelebi's. In his book, Evliya Çelebi also wrote about the flight of Hezarfen Ahmet Çelebi, the brother of Lagari Hasan Çelebi. Nobody is sure about that information. Let's see how Evliya Çelebi told the story to us.

"Evliya Çelebi proported that in 1633 Lagari Hasan Çelebi launched in a 7 winged rocket using 50 okka (140 lbs) of gunpowder from Sarayburnu, the point below Topkapı Palace in Istanbul. The flight was said to be undertaken at the time of the birth of Sultan Murad IV's daughter. As Evliya Celebi wrote, Lagari proclaimed before launch 'O my sultan! Be blessed, I am going to talk to Jesus'; after ascending in the rocket, he landed in the sea, swimming ashore and reporting "O my sultan! Jesus sends his regards to you!"; he was rewarded by the Sultan with silver and the rank of sipahi in the Ottoman army." (You can find the original part in the book of Evliya Çelebi, Seyahatname: Part I-Istanbul memories)

In these years the Ottomans were so conservative. They were related to their religion , and they weren't open to new things. They were against to the science. After that event all Ottomans didn't want Hasan Çelebi in Istanbul. The Sultan decided to sent him to another city. He was sent to Kirim, which is now in Ukraine.

The first rocket made in Ukraine, so many Ottomans understood that they made mistakes, because they believed Hasan Çelebi helped them to make a rocket. If the all stories are true, the Ottoman Empire missed a big chance.

Istanbul Beneath My Wings is a film about the lives of Hezarfen Ahmet Çelebi, his brother Lagari Hasan Çelebi, and Ottoman society in the early 17th century as witnessed and narrated by Evliya Çelebi. This movie tells the story of the flights of Hezarfen Ahmet Çelebi and Lagari Hasan Çelebi. This is an old movie, but it is one of the few movie, which describe the Ottoman Empire's situation.

This legend was tested and debunked on the TV show MythBusters, on November 11, 2009, in the episode "Crash and Burn". However, the rocket displayed on the TV show did not adhere to the specifications described by Evliya Çelebi. This shows us that the story of the flight of Lagari Hasan Çelebi can be a fiction. 

This video is showing his flight in the movie Istanbul Beneath My Wings: